?We?re averaging 300m a day with them,? said the principal of Tamborine-based Donnelly Blasting Services (DBS).
?The key thing is the consistency. Our average drilling rate is up and where some other machines will get 250m today and then 350m tomorrow, this rig has basically rolled off the back of the float and done what Atlas said it would do. It?s not taken months to set up and tune. It?s just gone out and consistently done the metres. That?s important to our bottom line.
?When we know something is going to take two days to get drilled, not two and a half days, because you have a good day and the machine just doesn?t get the metres the next day, that impacts our scheduling and scheduling is obviously key to that bottom line.?
Established as one of Queensland?s largest privately owned quarry and construction site drilling and blasting contractors over more than a decade, DBS currently has a fleet of 13 drill rigs and employs up to 20 staff. The company has two PowerROC T35s, including the first unit delivered in Australia.
The PowerROC T35 is being used to drill 76mm to 102mm diameter blast holes, typically up to 20m deep.
DBS does the drilling and blasting at several Queensland quarries, and has also worked on a number of dams and other construction projects.
Jason said the outlook for business was good. ?We always stay pretty constant. We work on a variety of different projects, so we?re always doing something different,? he said.
?We bought the PowerROC T35 rigs as part of our ongoing fleet upgrade. We order rigs two at a time.”
?We saw that the smaller rigs could out-produce bigger rigs and that?s what has happened. They are better on fuel economy, better on price, and the operators like the simplicity of the rigs. We like the reliability of the rigs, and the back-up from the supplier, the workshop back-up they give us.?
The two PowerROC T35s are currently working at separate quarry sites ?and showing the same results?, he explained.
At Mount Marrow, near Ipswich, experienced DBS driller Russ Schmidt (pictured, next page) said the results over the past two months had been impressive. In fact, some of what he had seen in 298.3 hours of drilling ?stumps me?.
?It?s a very straightforward machine ? not a lot to go wrong ? but it?s also extremely smooth, easy on the running gear and it?s capable of doing just an enormous amount of metres,? Russ said.
?It?s upped my metres ? I?ve come off another rig, and going as hard as I could in a shift I could maybe get 220m in a day. This thing [PowerROC T35] effortlessly does 300m to 320m a day and if I spent 10 hours in the rig I?d do over 350m.
?It?s definitely got a lot more power but with that power the smoothness stumps me.
?I?m over the moon with the machine. It?s upped the productivity, it?s comfortable ? I?m six foot one and 120kg last time I looked ? and the controls and set-up in the cabin are excellent. Its diesel usage compared to the amount of metres that you get is just very good. It?s not a machine that burns heavy amounts of diesel to get something done, which is fantastic.?
Russ, who has been with DBS for about five years, says quarry drilling can be harsh on equipment, rods and shanks. Mount Marrow could also be called ?Mount Basalt?.
?I?ve probably done over 9000m on the rods,? he said. ?The last shank did 127 percussion hours and I probably could have got another 20 out of it. I like to have one sort of half-worn as back-up in case one snaps out of the blue.
?The performance so far has been unbelievable. You have to come out and see the rods to believe it.
?Running cost wise, for running gear, they?re probably streets ahead of anything else I?ve sat on. The life expectancy that?s left in the rods now, going by the look of the threads alone, I wouldn?t be surprised to see them do another 5000m.
?Anything else I?ve had generally, between the 8000m to 9000m mark is pretty much about as good as it?s ever going to get.
?We drill a lot of hard stone, so generally consumables are subjected to fairly high temperatures when you?re drilling. If the rig is set up spot on, like this one seems to be, it?s very smooth, the impact?s perfect, feed rates are very easy to control and it just transfers into the life of your rods and your shank as well.
?The shank I don?t think you?d see do any more than 150 percussion hours myself, but the rods I?d be very interested to see how far they?ll go.?
?These PowerROC T35 rigs are a very straightforward rig,? he said. ?That?s operation and maintenance. They are just set up to get the metres.?
Typically using COP 1840EX rock drills (18kW drill power output) and T45 rods, with 142kW Cummins engine and CF90G5 screw-type air compressor, the PowerROC T35 drills a 64-102mm hole down to 25m.
Atlas Copco says the unit?s advanced and dependable feed system optimises rock drill performance, while the proven COP 1840EX combined with advanced drilling control system copes with the toughest rock conditions.
Source: Atlas Copco Construction and Mining Australia